Meet our San Jose Tutoring Staff


Great Teachers Inspire

Our tutors and staff in San Jose - Westgate consist of passionate educators who love inspiring children to succeed. Warm, caring and great at relating to kids, our tutors in San Jose know how to engage and motivate each child in a personal way—building confidence and smiles, as well as skills and better scores. We selectively choose tutors who know local curriculum and can link Sylvan lessons to what’s being taught in school. Get to know our tutors and staff in San Jose - Westgate!

  • Sarah Brankis, Center Director

    Sarah Brankis

    Center Director

    Hello, my name is Sarah and I am the Center Director here at Sylvan Westgate. I am originally from Des Moines, Iowa and moved to San Jose in July of 2019. I graduated from Drake University with a Bachelor's Degree in Secondary Education and another Bachelor's Degree in Mathematics Education. I taught all levels of high school mathematics throughout my 4 years of teaching in the Kingdom of Bahrain, Iowa, and California. I have a teaching credential in both Iowa and California and am currently working on my Master's in Mathematics with an emphasis on Secondary Education. In my free time, I enjoy driving down the coast and trying new foods. I look forward to helping your child succeed!
  • Gary G., Director of Education and Tutor

    Gary G.

    Director of Education and Tutor

    I am a native of San Jose and attended Santa Clara University. I graduated with a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Electrical Engineering with a minor in mathematics. Upon graduating I earned a subject area credential in mathematics. I have taught both junior high and high school classes for over 35 years at St. Leo’s School in San Jose. I became a Sylvan instructor in the fall of 2005. I sincerely enjoy helping our Sylvan students with mathematics and reading!
  • Noah H, Program Manager

    Noah H

    Program Manager

    Hi! My name is Noah and I’m the Program Manager at Sylvan. I have over 3 years of teaching experience, both here in the U.S. and abroad. I am a Bay Area native and have a degree in anthropology from San Francisco State University. After college, I served in the Peace Corps for two years before returning home. In my free time I like to do martial arts including boxing and muay thai. 
  • Torie O., Tutor

    Torie O.


    Currently, Torie is the ELD support teacher at Mount Pleasant School District. She works with students and teachers of students that speak another language at home. She has been teaching for over 25 years at all grade levels from Kindergarten to eighth grade. Torie lived in Mexico when she was young for five years where she learned how to speak Spanish. Torie started teaching in Los Angeles, relocating three years later to San Francisco. In 2004, Torie and her husband came to live in San Jose. At Sylvan, she mainly works with beginning readers; however she enjoys working with the older students as well.
  • Kevin M., Tutor

    Kevin M.


    Kevin earned a BA in Mathematics with Physics minor at San Jose State University, and a MA in Mathematics from UC Berkeley. He worked as an engineer in Silicon Valley for many years, where he applied his math skills to statistical analysis, communications networks, and software performance. Part of his work was explaining the uses and capabilities of mathematical tools and techniques to users who needed to understand how things worked. He enjoys sharing his enthusiasm for math and statistics, chemistry, and physics with young people now, and has been tutoring in local school classrooms and Sylvan Learning Centers since 2009.